Polystyrene (PS) as a low index dielectric material in silver-coated hollow glass waveguides (HGW) has been studied as
an alternative to the more conventional Ag/AgI HGWs. Polystyrene was chosen because it has been well characterized
and it is easily dissolved in toluene. The waveguides were made using an electroless, wet chemistry technique. The
absorbance spectrum for polystyrene indicates it will transmit from 1 to 3 &mgr;m and thus, it is useful at the Er:YAG laser
wavelength of 2.94 &mgr;m. For multilayer HGWs, cadmium sulfide is the high index dielectric material.
In recent times, terahertz (THz) or the far-infrared region of the electromagnetic spectrum has gained critical significance due to many potential applications including medical diagnostics, nondestructive evaluation of material parameters, chemical sensing, remote sensing and security screening. However with the development of various applications, the need of guided systems for the transmission of THz radiation have posed a challenge, as a flexible waveguide could simplify the propagation and detection of THz waves in remote locations without atmospheric absorption. Different structures, such as, rigid hollow metallic waveguides, solid wires, or short lengths of solid-core transparent dielectrics such as sapphire and plastic have already been explored for THz guiding to characterize their individual loss and dispersion profile. Recently, it has been reported that copper coated flexible, hollow polycarbonate waveguide has low loss of less than 4 dB/m with single mode operation at 1.89 THz. In the present study, using a broadband THz source of photoconductive antennae, we characterize the loss and dispersion profile of hollow core polycarbonate metal waveguides in the frequency range of 0.2 to 1.2 THz.